Talks hold key to future of Horncastle area libraries

Bill Aron at Horncastle Library
Bill Aron at Horncastle Library

Horncastle county councillor Bill Aron has insisted dialogue is the key to halting controversial cuts to the town’s library.

Horncastle library is one of several in the area under threat by proposals drawn up by cash-strapped Lincolnshire County Council.

A campaign group - Save our Libraries - has been formed and is growing in support.

Coun Aron said he could understand the “frustration and motivation” of campaigners amid fears some libraries could be axed and opening hours slashed at others, including Horncastle.

Coun Aron maintains there is a chance specific proposals for Horncastle - and other local libraries - could be curtailed.

The county council is currently holding a consultation process .

Coun Aron has helped organise a forum in Horncastle next month.

The forum comes after widespread claims the council’s own process is flawed and did not involve any meetings in Horncastle, Wragby, Woodhall Spa or Coningsby.

Coun Aron said: “I am really pleased that the people of Horncastle and surrounding villages are taking a keen interest in the library consultation.

“I hope as many people as possible fill in the online questionnaire, or the paper version. There is also a county wide petition that will be presented to the county council.

“Horncastle library houses a number of important services. When these services were merged, Horncastle was promised a six day a week service.

“We need to ensure these needs are catered for - through reasoned debate - against the challenge of budget restraints.”

The Horncastle forum will be held at the Admiral Rodney Hotel on September 12 from 7pm-9pm.

Nick Worth, the council’s portfolio holder for libraries, has been invited along with Coun Chris Brewis (chair of scrutiny).Coun Aron is hoping to involve other councillors and MP Sir Peter Tapsell.